Joint implants are becoming more and more popular in today’s society. This means that manufacturers of those implants are becoming more and more competitive to gain as much market share as possible. This rings true with hip implants. Total hip replacement systems consist of multiple components, including a femoral stem, femoral head, liner and acetabular shell. Resurfacing procedures can also be performed in which the femur is preserved and sculpted to accept a head, shell and stem, implanted into the femur. Manufacturers of each of these systems ran into problems when they rushed to market with metal-on-metal components of their hip replacement systems.
In this case, our client was implanted with a femoral head and acetabular cup made out of cobalt and chromium (metal) alloys. The movement of these components inside his hip joint led to fraying of the metal parts which caused tissue necrosis and metallosis or metal in his blood stream. Not surprisingly, these metal-on-metal systems led to massive litigation as a result. Most cases settled under a settlement “matrix,” which is an efficient way to handle these cases in mass, but sometimes they do not adequately compensate a client. When that happens, our firm has no problem continuing to pursue litigation against the manufacturer to obtain a fair result for our client.
This is what we did in this case. This client was required to undergo a revision surgery like most patients who received a hip replacement with metal-on-metal components. However, in his situation, the single revision surgery did not heal him. He was forced to undergo multiple subsequent surgeries to address the tissue damage and the toll his body took from having to undergo unnecessary surgery to replace the original hip implant. Once we continued to pursue his case individually and demonstrated a willingness and competency to take his case to trial, if necessary, the manufacturer provided him a favorable settlement that fit the circumstances that he underwent – a result that fit his individual case.